Journal of Contemporary Management - Volume 10, Issue 1, 2013
Volume 10, Issue 1, 2013
Author M.J. NaudeSource: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 1 –19 (2013)More Less
The purpose of this article is to provide a perspective on (1) the criteria that small and medium enterprises (SMEs) in Pietermaritzburg use to select their suppliers, and (2) the supply challenges they face. The selection of suppliers is an important task of the procurement professional, who is responsible for managing a firm's supply base - a critical role in all sectors of the economy - and thus protecting and defending the cost structure of the SME. This study presents a cross-case analysis of eleven case studies compiled by postgraduate students at the University of KwaZulu-Natal. Purposive sampling was used to select the cases reviewed. The results reveal that the majority of participants have a formal procurement policy in place.
The main criteria used to select suppliers include pricing, quality, on-time delivery and reputation/reliability. Challenges identified by participants include late deliveries and uncertain availability of stock from suppliers. The main limitation of this study is that only eleven SMEs were included. Therefore, the stated supplier selection criteria and procurement challenges faced are not exhaustive. However, insights from this study could assist parties in procurement to focus their attention on supplier-related challenges that may be within their control, and if solved could lead to cost savings, and improved quality and service delivery.
Source: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 20 –38 (2013)More Less
This paper compares the organisational strategic drivers of a South African mining house with those of industries abroad. It furthermore compares the key competencies or capabilities of the mining house with those of the overseas industries. A Delphi panel participants comprising of nine experts - with a combined experience base of over 130 years - provided the data. The strategic drivers as well as the key competencies ofthe South African mining house showed marked similarities to industries such as petrochemical, engineering and construction industries abroad. While safety enjoys higher priority in the South African mining environment thanin comparable industries abroad, there is room for improvement in the level of prioritisation of projects that takes place within project portfolios. The degree of authorisation given to project teams within the South African mining house to execute the project strategy is lower than that in comparable industries abroad while the level ofbusiness focus and business awareness within the South African mining project teams is relatively high. Thecorrelation between strategic drivers and core competencies was weaker than would be expected.
Source: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 39 –58 (2013)More Less
South Africa is in the process of implementing a multi-billion rand National Healthcare Insurance strategy, the objective being cost effective healthcare service delivery to all South Africans. The implementation and use of innovative e-health technology systems to support service delivery are deemed to form an important element of the strategy. The objective of this paper is to research the organisational culture and climate implications associated with the deployment, use and management of the innovative technologies concerned. In this regard a complex adaptive system, in contrast to a traditional scientific management, approach in dealing with culture change is specifically explored. The research methodology constitutes a multi-disciplinary literature review and it is suggested that the findings emanating from the study could serve as a source of information and reference for the technology and healthcare practitioners involved. A key finding emanating from the research is that the traditional scientific management approach in dealing with culture change may not be all that effective and it is suggested that a complex adaptive systems perspective may be of more value and ought to be considered.
Source: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 59 –76 (2013)More Less
The ever-changing nature of competition, soaring customer demands and immensely competitive refinishing market has resulted in some automotive refinish paint distributors having to adopt innovative, creative and proactive approaches when planning the strategic execution of their sustainable business development strategies. Some of these innovative, creative and proactive approaches are difficult to evaluate against marketing principles or by using traditional business management tools. What is perceptible to the management of these automotive paint distributors, albeit unknown to them, is that they are practicing a multi-dimensional approach to doing business in the automotive refinish retail distribution sector - a strategic mix between customised technical services support structure and the management sales support activities.
Source: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 77 –99 (2013)More Less
The perception that a person has of an entrepreneurial career ultimately influences his or her intention of pursuing such a career path. By investigating the perceptions that employees have of starting and managing an own business, the researchers looked for reasons why many individuals remain in the employment of others rather than embarking on an entrepreneurial career for themselves. The primary objective of this study was twofold, to establish the perceptions that employees have of an entrepreneurial career, and to establish the influence of these perceptions on their entrepreneurial intentions. Perceptions of an entrepreneurial career were established in terms of several work values. The data gathered from the 184 usable questionnaires was subjected to various statistical analyses. Multiple regression analysis was undertaken to investigate relationships between the perceptions held of self-employment and entrepreneurial intentions. The work values challenging, future prospects, freedom and time, and autonomy were identified as influencing the entrepreneurial intentions of employees participating in this study.
Author W. DlaminiSource: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 100 –116 (2013)More Less
In modern economies, efficient procurement practices play a strategic role both in the private and public sectors. Amid the current recession, the application of procurement best practices turns out to be even more relevant. This is because procurement best practices ensure the reduction of wasteful activities, streamline operations and create value chains for sustainable competitive advantage. However, despite numerous commendations on the benefits associated with the adoption of the procurement best practices, most organisations still find the implementation and continuous sustainability a challenge. Hence, the purpose of this article was to determine the level at which the University of South Africa (UNISA) has progressed with the application of procurement best practices. A conceptual analytical approach was employed with the aid of a checklist. The article revealed that UNISA has progressed to a proactive stage with regard to the application of procurement best practices. The article further brought to light the challenges impeding the advancement to the best practices. Based on the findings, it was recommended that the senior management in UNISA should take conscious efforts of addressing the identified challenges in order to gain a competitive advantage.
Re-positioning Namibia as a cultural tourism destination to enhance its competitiveness : a tour operators' perspectiveSource: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 117 –134 (2013)More Less
Namibia is rich in mineral wealth, tourism and wildlife. Over the past years, the destination has been promoted for its wildlife, abundance of scenery and endless horizons. Nevertheless, cultural tourism has been viewed as an alternative to the main stream tourism. Studies have shown that cultural tourism has become an important product and in some cases a dominant factor in the rural economies of African destinations. The paper presents and discusses key findings derived from the study. The empirical evidence shows that the use of culture as a tourism product can complement the plethora of wildlife products currently on offer in Namibia. Results further show that most tour operators are reluctant to promote Namibia as a cultural tourism destination. The majority of tourists who visit the rural areas do so by coincidence since the rural areas are located en-route to the National Parks. Even though Namibia experiences a significant growth in tourist arrivals, less attention is currently being paid to the development of alternative forms of tourism, particularly cultural tourism, despite the growing interest of international visitors. This paper urges tour operators to create demand for cultural tourism as an alternative form of tourism.
Author R.V. WeeksSource: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 135 –155 (2013)More Less
South Africa has taken the first steps in implementing a National Health Insurance (NHI) scheme. An electronic health record (EHR) system will form a vital component of the infrastructure that needs to be put into place for managing healthcare services. Even a brief review of the literature reveals that managing the transformation from a paper-based to an electronic based system is complex in nature, as it entails a fundamental change in the healthcare culture. Consequently, in many instances such systems do not fully realise the benefits and objectives envisaged. With this in mind, this research study focuses on gaining an insight into to complexities and challenges involved in implementing an EHR system, taking the current South African situation into consideration. The research study constitutes a multi-disciplinary literature review and a limited in scope and extent narrative enquiry. The purpose of the latter being an attempt to validate some of the insights gained from the literature. The value of the research study stems from the fact that an EHR system will form an essential component of the NHI initiatives supporting infrastructure and the insights gained from the research study could inform the project's management strategy.
Source: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 156 –175 (2013)More Less
The health care industry plays an important role in the life of consumers since it impacts their personal well-being and those close to them. This industry involves ample customer contact resulting in service encounters that are often negative. The health care industry in South Africa is typified by large disparities between the public and private healthcare sectors. As in other industries, customer satisfaction, loyalty and consequently long-term survival of health care businesses are also influenced by customers experiencing a sense of perceived justice following a negative service encounter.
This study uncovers the perceived justice experienced by patients in both public and private health care sectors in reaction to negative service encounters. An exploratory factor analysis was conducted and the three underlying dimensions of the perceived justice concept as theorised by other authors were uncovered. Respondents perceive significant differences between these dimensions. Furthermore, public health care patients perceive significantly lower levels of procedural and distributive justice than private health care patients. The study did not uncover any differences in relation to perceived justice among respondents based on demographic characteristics. Based on the results, marketers are able to design strategies to recover from service failures and increase the perceived justice patients experience.
Source: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 176 –200 (2013)More Less
Despite the extensive research that has been conducted on the impact of marketing on food consumption, media communication channels and the promotion of healthy lifestyles, no known research has been conducted in the healthy fast-casual restaurant segment with a specific focus on media communication channels. This article considers the impact that a more selective choice of media communication channel can have on restaurants in the healthy fast-casual segment when targeting young adult consumers. This selectivity has become increasingly important due to the advertising clutter in the South African restaurant industry which is aggravated by healthy fast-casual restaurants needing to compete against traditional fast-casual restaurants who are adding healthier items to their menus. The use and perceptions of South African young adult consumers of selected media communication channels, obtained by means of a structured questionnaire, suggest that print and online media communication channels influence their healthy lifestyle buying behaviours more than display and broadcast media communication channels. The provision of healthy offerings and marketing by means of print and online media can be used by restaurants to attract and retain more young adults as consumers, to enhance business performance and to create a healthier South African community.
Strengthening brand awareness through internal marketing : an application to the car rental industrySource: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 201 –222 (2013)More Less
The four traditional internal marketing mix elements, namely internal product, price, promotion and place, as well as the three services internal marketing mix elements, namely internal people, process, and physical evidence are well known in product and services markets, but their influence on brand awareness is unknown in the car rental industry. This research aimed to provide guidance to South African car rental companies to improve their respective brand awareness, enabling them to expand customer bases whilst retaining existing customers. The influence of these seven internal marketing mix elements on South African car rental customers' perception of brand awareness was investigated using structural equation modelling. Equivalence testing was done to compare the current and ideal situations in the car rental industry. The results displayed that internal processes are critical for a positive perception by car rental customers. The results further indicated that the model developed is applicable to the current and ideal situation as perceived by customers of car rental companies.
Source: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 223 –238 (2013)More Less
In recent years, higher education institutions in South Africa and, more specifically, private higher education institutions, have faced increasing pressures on many fronts. These pressures include increased competition, changing technology and greater emphasis on efficient and effective management. The aim of this article is to report on the findings of a study that investigated the impact of leadership practices on service quality in private higher education (PHE) in South Africa as a source of competitive advantage. Literature suggests that leadership impacts positively on quality and, equally importantly, on service quality. Principals at these PHE institutions have a notable influence on the quality of service rendered to the students. Using a quantitative methodology and a cross-sectional survey research design, the study was conducted on five campuses of a prominent PHE provider across South Africa. Two survey instruments were used, namely the Leadership Practices Inventory questionnaire and the SERVQUAL questionnaire. Correlation analysis was used for data analysis. Findings of this study indicate a strong positive linear correlation between the leadership practices of principals and the service quality at these institutions. Thus the empirical findings complement and add to existing literature by emphasising the positive impact of leadership on service quality in PHE.
The mineworkers' unprocedural strike : setting the path for redefining collective bargaining practice in South AfricaAuthor M.O. SamuelSource: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 239 –258 (2013)More Less
The propensity for workers in South Africa to undertake unprocedural industrial action has assumed a worrisome dimension in recent years. The author examines the current strike actions by workers, especially in the mining industry, in relation to the collective bargaining procedure recognised by the labour legislation. The emerging evidence suggests a radical departure by workers from the established collective bargaining and labour dispute resolution procedures stipulated by the Labour Relations Act no. 66 of 1995. The current trend is for workers to disregard requirements of the labour legislation, and to breach provisions of existing collective agreements duly executed by elected labour union officials by embarking on wildcat strike actions, in the process employing violence, arson, intimidation and threats in order to force employers to accede to their demands. This unconventional collective bargaining and dispute resolution mechanisms 'invented' by workers portend grave danger for a peaceful and harmonious industrial relations practice in the country.
Source: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 259 –278 (2013)More Less
During the early stages of business development, access to finance is critically dependent upon the owner. Human capital attributes - including education, experience, and knowledge - have long been argued to be an important resource for accessing finance and spurring growth in entrepreneurial firms. Recognising the importance of demand-side factors of human capital when accessing funding, this study assembles a diverse sample of entrepreneurs in the greater Johannesburg area to determine empirically the relative importance attributed to each human capital variable when accessing funding. Results based on hypotheses testing indicate statistically significant findings and distinct clusters of human capital variables that illustrate the importance of knowledge, education and expertise when accessing funding. The results assist practitioners in understanding how the synergistic effects of knowledge, education and experience are helpful for acquiring financial resources.
Source: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 279 –297 (2013)More Less
In the South African mining industry, employee relations are highly complex and often characterised by violence and unrest. The purpose of this article is to determine if there is a relationship between transformational leadership and employee engagement at a mine in the North West Province. The methodology included a quantitative, cross-sectional survey design. The main findings were that a transformational leadership style and employee engagement are related to one another and should be considered holistically. The unique contribution of this research lies in the fact that it provides insight into the complex relationships between leaders and ordinary employees at the mine. The research considered both sides of the problem, namely from the point of view of the leaders as well as that of the ordinary employees who might be experiencing various degrees of engagement with their jobs. Recommendations for future management interventions include that leaders pay individual attention to followers, provide balanced feedback and provide opportunities for growth and development.
The perceived effectiveness of a pre-group intervention workshop for future management specialists : an exploratory studySource: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 298 –319 (2013)More Less
Learning through group work constitutes an integral part of academic teaching and learning. Working in groups extends the frontiers of skills learning and knowledge acquisition, and increases students' chances of employment. However, despite the benefits of group work it is not without its challenges. Insight into some of the benefits and challenges identified from the students' perspective could inform lecturers in higher learning environments on how they could enhance the teaching and learning strategies adopted by the learning institute. This article presents research that aims to determine whether a workshop intervention focusing on group dynamics before the start of modules had enhanced the benefits and reduced the challenges of group work. To achieve this objective, a self-designed questionnaire was administered to students prior to and after the intervention of the workshop. The results are compared and are reported in this article. The findings reveal that while there have been some clear benefits to the workshop intervention, it has not reduced all the challenges related to group work. These findings are discussed and a number of recommendations made on further strategies that could enhance the benefits and reduce the challenges associated with group work in tertiary educational settings.
Author M. MpinganjiraSource: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 320 –338 (2013)More Less
Most governments in Africa are known to have embraced the concept of e-government be it to varying degrees. This is mainly because of the potential of e-government to help improve public service delivery. Success of such initiatives however largely depends on how widely the new delivery channels are accepted by intended users. This paper investigates from the citizens' perspective factors that affect adoption of e-government services provided by mainstream government departments. The study was conducted in Gauteng, South Africa. Data was collected from a total of 380 respondents using a structured questionnaire. The results show that perceived usefulness, perceived ease of use, privacy risk concerns and attitude towards e-government are important factors that influence citizens' decisions to adopt or not adopt e-government services. The findings have wide implications on government efforts aimed at encouraging more citizens to make use of such services and these have been highlighted in the paper.
Source: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 339 –361 (2013)More Less
Within the competitive cell phone industry, long-term customer relationships can result in much needed customer retention. However, relationship marketing strategies should only be applied to customers receptive to relationship building; relationship marketing strategies should be targeted at customers with relationship intentions. This article examined relationship intention within the South African cell phone industry through a non-probability convenience sample of 605 respondents. Findings suggest that cell phone users' overall or level of relationship intentions is not associated with their relationship lengths or contractual agreements with their cell phone network providers. Consequently, cell phone network providers should be cautious to use customers' relationship lengths or contractual agreements in isolation to identify customers for relationship building. It is recommended that cell phone network providers should target customers with relationship intentions for relationship building, as these customers are the most likely customers to be retained and provide return on such an investment.
Relationships between ethnocentrism and lifestyle dimensions among a targeted consumer segment in SandtonSource: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 362 –383 (2013)More Less
The new political dispensation in South Africa in 1994 created opportunities for Black consumer segments. Research indicates that the emerging black middle class segment perceives that their true identity is not understood, and that they are often misrepresented. Very little research has focused on the buying behaviour of these consumers. The objectives of this study were to determine the level of consumer ethnocentrism and lifestyle among the emerging black middle class in Sandton, and to establish whether demographics influence perceptions of consumers' ethnocentrism and lifestyle dimensions. Non-probability convenience and judgement sampling were used.
Results indicate that a moderately high level of consumer ethnocentrism exists among respondents. It was found that a moderately high level of fashion consciousness exists among respondents. It was found that moderately high levels of self-consciousness and health consciousness exist among respondents. Age was the only demographic characteristic that showed an association with two lifestyle dimensions, namely, fashion consciousness and homemaking. Male and female respondents do not differ in terms of their involvement with homemaking activities. No linear relationship between the consumer ethnocentrism and the various lifestyle dimensions of the emerging black middle class in Sandton were found.
Source: Journal of Contemporary Management 10, pp 384 –404 (2013)More Less
Different versions of the process of conducting focus group research were identified as a source of confusion in the field of marketing research, with implications for the misuse of the process, thus rendering research quality control difficult. A seven-step guiding framework was conceived, based on the literature reviewed, and opinions of industry stakeholders on its scientific viability and relevance were sought through a qualitative study. A judgement sample was drawn, and in-depth interviews were conducted on eighteen respondents at their workplaces in the Gauteng Province. Based on findings of the study, the guiding framework was confirmed as a scientifically relevant intervention within the marketing research industry context, and deemed necessary for purposes of improving quality control in focus group research studies across industry disciplines.